Rock Climbing

If you’ve mastered the basics of rock climbing and are eager to take your passion outdoors, you might be ready to graduate from indoor walls to real rock faces. First, research what type of climbing you’d like to pursue: traditional, top roping, or bouldering. Then, check with your local AMC chapter or climbing gym to…

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Climbing shoes come in three different styles—neutral, moderate, and aggressive—and become progressively more arched, or “cambered,” to take on more difficult climbs. Beginners should opt for the flattest, most neutral style, which offers good all-around performance with a relaxed, wear-all-day fit. More advanced climbers will want arched shoes, which compress your toes and create more…

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Across the nation, outdoor recreation generates more than $59 billion in local and state tax revenues each year. When we buy a lift ticket, purchase new boots, or spend the night in a hotel before a big hike, tax revenues flow to towns and states. But some states benefit more, proportionally, from these revenues than…

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Rock climbing can be an exhilarating adventure into the vertical realm. It can also be intimidating, given all of the gear and lingo that comes with it. Just as you’ll want to learn climbing skills from the ground up, it’s helpful to get acquainted with the basic equipment you’ll need. Most climbing gyms rent the…

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Climbing shoes are notorious for retaining hard-to-remove foot odor, especially since they’re usually worn without socks that could help soak up any sweaty stink. To neutralize smells, you’ll need a powerful counteragent. Enter Extra Strength Lemon Eucalyptus Essential Oil Odor Eliminator ($15; lumioutdoors.com) from Utah-based Lumi Outdoors. This shoe spray relies on natural, antimicrobial ingredients…

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Alex Honnold recites every step like a carefully crafted dance, narrating his routine of small handholds and foot placements with meticulousness and grace. Taking a deep breath, he extends his left leg across a gap and, solidifying his grip, pulls himself through the Boulder Challenge, a particularly difficult pitch on his route up Yosemite’s El…

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A 100th birthday only comes around once, and when it does, a major blowout is in order. This year, 2018, marks the White Mountain National Forest centennial, and knowing a little of the forest’s history will make your celebrations all the sweeter. (Don’t worry: We’ll get to the party part in a minute!) When the…

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You are heading out for a day at the crag with some local participants, most of whom have never climbed on real rock before! It is an exciting time but there is a lot to consider including: Are your skills up to date? (For current training & learning opportunities with the AMC, click here.) How…

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I spent the first day of 2017 filling my lungs with crisp winter air near New Paltz, N.Y., with two fellow rock climbers. That morning, the three of us had trudged through empty woodland and ground covered by 4 inches of fresh snow to the quartz cliffs, where the freezing rock—in some places, still covered…

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I. One of my oldest memories survives from an unknown year in the early 1980s, when I was 6 or 7, and takes place near the top of a long-since-forgotten mountain in Acadia National Park. I had been following my parents as usual when we stepped out from the canopied shelter of the trail onto…

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